Thursday, April 27, 2006

Ramayana - The Great Illusion

Lakshman, the brother of Rama, told him that he would like to see the great illusion of Maya (the drama of creation) which Rama was talking about. Rama replied, "You will get into troubled through seeing it, so I shouldn't bother about it." Lakshman replied, "I'm quite sure it won't affect me, and I'm still curious to see it." So Tama said, "All right, you'll see it by and by," and left the question open. They went to the river to bathe.
When they hahd finished bathing and both were coming ashore, Rama said, "My brother, I've lost my ring, do you think you could dive for it?" Lakshman went and dived for the ring; at that moment he lost consciousness. When he came out of the water, he was in a different land, in loverly countryside. There he met a beautiful woman, and they settled down together, established a home and lived like householders. He had four sons, and when he became and old man he caught malarial fever, developed a cough, and eventually died. His sons took him to the river. The custom was to immerse the body in the water. At the moment the body was sobmerged Lakshman came out of the world of illusion and found himslef back on the river bank.
He went to Rama with tears in his eyes and repentance in his heart, but still did not remember what had happened. Rama said to him, "You wanted to experience the world of illusion. Now you have experienced it."

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Ken Wilber - To Understand The Whole

”To understand the whole, it is necessary to understand the parts. To understand the parts, it is necessary to understand the whole. Such is the circle of understanding.
We move from part to whole and back again, and in that dance of comprehension, in that amazing circle of understanding, we come alive to meaning, to value, and to vision: the very circle of understanding guides our way, weaving together the pieces, healing the fractures, mending the torn and tortured fragments, lighting the way ahead- this extraordinary movement from part to whole and back again, with healing the hallmark of each and every step, and grace the tender reward.” – Ken Wilber, The Eye of Spirit.

Ken Wilber, (The Eye of the Spirit - An Integral Vision for a World Gone Slightly Mad).

Eliphas Levi, The Key of the Mysteries

Eliphas Levi, The Key of the Mysteries:
“On the brink of mystery, the spirit of man is seized with giddiness. Mystery is the abyss which attracts our unquiet curiosity by the terror of its depth.

The greatest mystery of the infinite is the existence of Him for whom alone all is without mystery.

Comprehending the infinite which is essentially incomprehensible, He is Himself that infinite and eternally unfathomable mystery; that is to say, that He is, in all seeming, that supreme absurdity in which Tertullian believed.

Necessarily absurd, since reason must renounce for ever the project of attaining to Him; necessarily credible, since science and reason, far from demonstrating that He does not exist, are dragged by the chariot of fatality to believe that He does exist, and to adore Him themselves with closed eyes.

Why? Because this absurd is the infinite source of reason. The light springs eternally from the eternal shadows. Science, that Babel Tower of the spirit, may twist and coil its spirals ever-ascending as it will; it may make the earth tremble; it will never touch the sky.

God is He whom we shall eternally learn to know better, and, consequently, He whom we shall never know entirely.

The realm of mystery is, then, a field open to the conquests of the intelligence. March there as boldly as you will, never will you diminish its extent; you will only alter its horizons. To know all is an impossible dream; but woe unto him who dares not to learn all, and who does not know that, in order to know anything, one must learn eternally!”

Divison in Theology

This is taken from Andrew Louth´s Phd Thesis Discerning the Mystery

”In any case, it is certain that much of the division in theology is simply a reflection of the division in our culture: the specialization in theology, the remoteness of theologians - often complained of - from the Church and the believing Christian, and indeed the remoteness of theologians from one another (the Old Testament specialist from the specialist in nineteenth-century theology, say) are all part of a phenomenon we see much of elsewhere and have come to regard as inevitable. One way in which the division in theology manifests itself is in the division between theology and spirituality, the division between though about God and the movement of the heart toward God. It is a division of mind and heart, recalling Eliot’s ‘dissociation of the sensibility’, and a division which is particularly damaging in theology, for it threatens in a fundamental way the whole fabric of theology in both its spiritual and intellectual aspects. Cut off from the movement of the heart towards God, theology finds itself in a void – for where is its object? Where is the God with whom it concerns itself? Even if God can be reached by reason, even if natural theology is possible, real theology could never be confined within such narrow limits. For theology (as opposed to religious studies) concerns itself with the Scriptures, with tradition, with the development of dogma, with the history of the Church, all of which is natural enough to the Christian, to one who believes. But belief, faith, is not a purely rational exercise; it involves, as an indispensable element, the response of the will or the heart to the One in whom we believe. Cut off from this, theology has to justify itself, not directly, but indirectly, as an indispensable part of historic European culture, for example. It is an uneasy justification, and inevitably pushes theology to the periphery, to be studied not for itself, but for some usefulness that can be claimed for it.”

(Andrew Louth, Discerning the Mystery - And Essay on the Nature of Theology.)